Evening Update Friday 14 January 2022

The French High Authority of Health has approved an additional vaccine in the fight against Covid-19. The HAS today approved the use of Nuvaxovid developed by Novavax and it's expected that the French government will authorize the vaccine's use shortly. It's the fifth Covid-19 vaccine which the Authority has authorised, the others being the Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca and Janssen vaccines. The authority said that data from the various studies show very good efficacy of Nuvaxovid against symptomatic forms of Covid-19 at nearly 90%, and in particular against severe forms with nearly 100% efficacy . However, it said that the long-term efficacy, the efficacy against the transmission of Sars-Cov-2 and the efficacy against the Delta and Omicron variants, which emerged after the end of the follow-up of the clinical trials, remain to be confirmed .  

The PACA Regional Health Agency has issued a reminder of the categories of people who are a priority for receiving a Covid-19 test. The agency said that these are symptomatic people and contacts at risk, people with a medical prescription, people with a positive self-test and people for whom a test is compulsory for the application of border rules such as travellers returning from red zone countries. The agency also reminded people of the three types of test available, which it said are the RT-PCR virological test  which is processed by a laboratory with results within 24 hours, the antigen test  available in pharmacies or laboratories and allowing a result to be obtained in 15 to 30 minutes and the self-test which is available in pharmacies and allows a result to be obtained in 15 minutes. A wide range of resources and information about Covid-19 testing and protocols is available on the agency's website https://www.paca.ars.sante.fr/

Nine vaccination centres will remain open in the Var this weekend. For those nine centres, appointments are made directly online by following a link or calling a phone number, details of which can be found on the Prefecture's website www.var.gouv.fr

A man in his twenties has died after attempting to cross the English Channel on a boat carrying migrants this morning. The Maritime Prefecture of the Channel and the North Sea said that the Gris-Nez regional operational surveillance and rescue centre was informed that a boat was in difficulty near the beaches of Berck-sur-Mer in the Pas-de-Calais. At least one person was reported to be overboard. Air and sea rescue services were dispatched and a man was declared dead after the boat had been towed back to land.

French Minister of the Economy Bruno Le Maire has said that the rate of the Livret A will increase from 0.5% to 1.0%. Speaking on French television today, he said that the change will be effective from 1 February. He also announced that the LEP savings account will increase from 1% to 2.2%.

11.7 tonnes of Christmas trees have been collected so far by municipal authorities in Nice. Unwanted trees can be deposited in the collection boxes which have been placed throughout the city and will be turned into compost. The collection operation ends on January 17th.

 

BUSINESS

UK Gross Domestic Product rose above its pre-coronavirus pandemic level of February 2020 for the first time in November according to the Office for National Statistics. GDP is estimated to have grown by 0.9% in November compared to October. Services, production and construction output all increased between October and November. However, there is concern that growth may have slowed after the spread of the Omicron variant and the introduction of new Covid-19 measures more recently.

The International Energy Agency has said that surging electricity demand is putting power systems under strain around the world. In its electricity market report it said that global electricity demand surged in 2021, creating strains in major markets, pushing prices to unprecedented levels and driving the power sector’s emissions to a record high. Last year’s 6% rise in global electricity demand was the largest in percentage terms since 2010 when the world was recovering from the global financial crisis. In absolute terms, last year’s increase of over 1 500 terawatt-hours was the largest ever.

 

SPORT

Tennis... Lawyers acting for Novak Djokovic have said that he will appeal against the decision by Australia's Immigration Minister Alex Hawke to cancel his visa for a second time. At a court hearing shortly after the decision was announced, a judge ruled that Djokovic cannot be deported while the appeal proceedings are in progress. An appeal hearing is expected on Sunday. At the moment, the world number one is still scheduled to play in the Australian Open in Melbourne which begins on Monday.

Andy Murray has reached his first ATP Tour final since 2019 after defeating Reilly Opelka at the Sydney Tennis Classic. He'll meet Aslan Karatsev in the final, who defeated Dan Evans in the other semi-final.

Cricket...It's been day one of the 5th and final Test between Australia and England in Hobart. The start of play was delayed because of light drizzle at the ground. Australia finished the day on 241-6, with Travis Head scoring a century.

South Africa have won the Third Test against India 2-1 with a seven-wicket victory in Cape Town. Keegan Petersen hit 82.

Football.. Tomorrow's Burnley against Leicester match in the English Premier League has been postponed because of Covid-19 cases and injuries at Burnley. Other matches this weekend are Brighton against Crystal Palace this evening, on Saturday Manchester City play Chelsea, Newcastle face Watford. Norwich play Everton. Wolves host Southampton and Aston Villa play Manchester United. On Sunday Liverpool play Brentford, West Ham host Leeds and Spurs play Arsenal.

Rugby Union - There are two games in the European Champions Cup tonight. Cardiff play Harlequins in Pool B and Castres play Munster.

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